There are three strategies in detecting breast cancer: Mammography, MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging), and Ultrasound. But, could there possibly be a fourth?
BSGI (Breast-Specific Gamma Imaging) is a procedure that follows a Mammography. It shows the lesions independent of tissue density and discovers early stage cancers.
The patient first receives a tracing agent that is absorbed by all the cells in the body. Due to their increased rate of metabolic activity, cancerous cells in the breast absorb a greater amount of the tracing agent than normal and are highlighted in the imaging.
According to a study published in the February 2009 issue of American Journal of Roentgenology, BSGI is particularly specialized in finding invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC), a type of breast cancer that begins in the milk-producing glands (lobules) and then spreads to the surrounding breast tissues. The study showed that BSGI has an ILC sensitivity, compared to its forerunner, MRI, with an 83% sensitivity.
Also, a lower rate of unnecessary breast biopsies has been reported, compared to an MRI, in a new study presented at the 19th Annual National Interdisciplinary Breast Center Conference in Las Vegas. BSGI was found to have equal sensitivity to a breast MRI in the detection of malignant and high-risk breast lesions, while reducing the rate of uncertain findings by 50-percent.
BSGI is very efficient for women with dense breasts, where others are not as accurate. It is cheaper and easier to read, but, this type of test is most suitable for people with a moderate-risk of breast cancer versus high-risk factors.